After the great success of PM Modi’s Make in India campaign, India’s leader is now ready to launch his next digital dream project – Digital India. The PM has envisioned a bold new digital India focussed on creating a digitally empowered society on par with the countries of the developed world. On June 29, 2015, PM Modi announced the launch of “Digital India week” and shared his vision with India and the world. The Digital India vision is focussed on the three main areas of building digital infrastructure as a necessary utility, governance and digital services on demand, and digital empowerment of citizens. The program aims at developing manufacturing and job opportunities along with new electronic products and services.
Prominent Indian business leaders, the Ambani brothers, Tata Group chief Cyrus Mistry and Wipro’s head Mr. Azim Premji are key investors and have committed USD $70 bn to the Digital India initiative. Kumar Mangalam Birla, chairman of the conglomerate Aditya Birla Group, also announced USD $7 bn towards the project. The initial government investment was an USD $ 18 bn to strengthen and reinvigorate the digital infrastructure in India.
Among the wide array of digital products and services are: provisions for broadband highways, universal access to mobile connectivity, public internet access and the newly coined eKranti; i.e. electronic delivery of government services reforming government through technology. The program also aims at promoting electronics manufacturing and taking it to newer heights.
A new digital India will also look to, for the first time, e-document sharing between agencies and electronic and digital signatures, eSign, based on Aadhaar (national identification cards) cards. It will also mean digital advancement in healthcare systems with enabled online registration services for payments, booking appointments with doctors and hospitals, online diagnostic reports, availability of blood donors with an online database and much more.
For the first time, the government of India, an initiative named Bharat Net, a high speed digital highway to connect all the 250,000 Gram Panchayats (Elective Village Councils in rural India) of the country. This would be the largest rural broadband connectivity using optical fibre.
In an endeavor to facilitate services offered to citizens, DeitY*has undertaken an initiative -Digitize India Platform (DIP) - for large scale digitization of records in the country.
The Electronics Development Fund (EDF) Policy aims to promote Innovation, R&D, and Product Development and to create a resource pool of IP within the country to create a self-sustaining eco-system of venture funds.
BSNL (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited) has plans to introduce Next Generation Network (NGN), to update and replace old exchanges to an Internet Protocol -based technology to manage all types of services like voice, data, multimedia/ video and other types of packet switched communication services.
According to a statement issued by the Modi government “The estimated impact of Digital India by 2019 would be cross-cutting, ranging from broadband connectivity in all Panchayats, Wi-Fi in schools and universities and Public Wi-Fi hotspots. The program will generate a huge number of IT, Telecom and Electronics jobs, both directly and indirectly.” The ambitious program hopes to bridge India’s digital divide and create an estimated 1.8 mn jobs in the economy.
References *DeitY - India's Department of Electronics and Information Technology – which uses the domain name deity.gov.in
July 2 2015 BBC News India http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-33359195
July 1, 2015 economic Times http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/internet/digital-india-15-salient-things-to-know-about-pm-narendra-modisproject/articleshow/47893380.cms?intenttarget=no&utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Dailynewsletter&ncode=c452fa474741b72e7afbed47563a5107